Frequently Asked Questions
If you’re reading this, then you’re probably in a slightly unpleasant situation – wondering whether you have been mis-sold or if there was something wrong with your investment or pension …
It’s not a great place to be, and something that our team deal with daily with our clients.
For that reason, we’ve put together a handy list of answers to common questions you may want to know about pension claims and Claims Advice before you reach out and get the ball moving.
Why can I complain?
Unfortunately just because an investment you held has gone down doesn’t mean you can complain and get compensation. If you chose to take the risk and knew and understood this you have to accept that investments can go down as well as up.
However many people sold into the Aviva Morley funds whether Balanced or Cautious didn’t want to take any gambles with their money and Barclays knew (or should have known this). The risks and details of the investments were not explained properly and these investments were not even classified correctly and were only suitable for people who were Adventurous investors.
At other times our in depth research shows other problems with products such as guarantees that were not properly explained or that the actions of banks were not in their customers’ best interests for example by keeping funds open and client’s invested when they should not have been.
How much will I get back?
For investment cases it will be necessary to look at what the correct advice would have been. This will normally involve looking at how a benchmark has performed compared to the product you were invested in. Compensation will then be calculated on this basis. If you have surrendered the investment interest will be paid on any loss compared to the benchmark up to the date they pay you compensation. In line with regulations this part of your compensation will be taxed at 20% however if you are a non-taxpayer you will be able to reclaim this.
How long will the claim take?
If a case needs to be sent to the Financial Ombudsman Service this is likely to lengthen your case by at least 3 to 9 months and if the case needs an Ombudsman to issue a final decision this is likely to be even longer.
What do I need to get started?
What if I don't know all the details?
What will you do for me?
What does your service cost?
Our fees for each investment are based on a portion of the compensation amount. The fee depends on the redress amount for each investment account as detailed below.
|Redress Band||Redress Amount||Max % Fee||Max Total Fee (including VAT at 20%)|
|Lower Limit||Upper Limit|
|1||£1||£1,499||30% plus VAT||£504|
|2||£1,500||£9,999||28% plus VAT||£3,000|
|3||£10,000||£24,999||25% plus VAT||£6,000|
|4||£25,000||£49,999||20% plus VAT||£9,000|
|5||£50,000||NA||15% plus VAT||£12,000|
Please note that this is not to be taken as an estimate of the amount likely to be recovered.
How long have you been in business?
Can I complain without professional help from a firm like CLAIMS?
Loss calculations are a somewhat technical area and you would probably be helped by looking at some of FOS’ own publications on the matter such as their online resource and Guidance Notes. You should be aware that FOS’ compensation formulas do not always mirror those of the courts. And remember one very important thing. You cannot win a complaint solely because your investment has performed badly. You must provide reasons why you believe the policy was mis-sold or explain in what way it was not suitable for you.
For other types of cases, for example, you may wish to make a claim for consequential loss you must explain to FOS in some detail what your existing liabilities were and why you did not use part or all of the investment funds to reduce them. These may not have been recorded in the point of sale paperwork and without you drawing the matter to FOS’ attention and giving a full account of what happened the extra amount of compensation you may be owed would not be awarded. So remember, it is important that you do a thorough job and tell FOS everything helping them to make the right decision.
If you are uncertain on how to present your case to the Ombudsman Service you can always ring us up for some free advice and we will point you in the right direction.
If I instruct you to act for me can I cancel my agreement?
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